Working in clay can take so LONG! Wedge, make, apply three coats of this, dry, wait, fire, glaze, wait, fire and wait some more and hope the pieces haven’t exploded in the kiln because you haven’t waited long enough for drying or didn’t wedge the clay long enough –holy cow! The amount of time put into one piece can require a lot of dedication and PATIENCE. Working again with clay I’m quickly reminded to toss any need for instant gratification and quick completion of a piece out the window.
For successful clay projects there can be so many steps that all take attention and time. I’m feeling that prices for pottery are greatly undervalued. I’m reading through my favorite clay artist’s Blogs and am starting to better understand why so many potters work in volume production, stick to one type of clay body, limited palettes of glaze recipes and firing styles. It seems in working this way there can be a higher rate of success and a larger body of work in which to sell and make a living.
My main clay rack is now full of Tile White ^05 drying greenware. I’ll need to remind myself to be PATIENT and let the sgraffito trays dry before I fire them for the first time. Patience isn’t exactly my middle name, but I’m doing my best. It’s just that I’m so excited to see how some of these color underglazes are going to turn out and I’m even more excited to glaze the bisqued trays with some new matte and satin clear glaze I bought and see how they turn out. So see, I’m already IMPATIENT for two whole steps ahead!
For my latest sgraffito work I experimented with using some Duncan E-Z Strokes underglazes I had bought off Cr@igs List last year. I really liked how the Black and Midnight Blue flowed from my brush onto the greenware and loved carving the softened greenware. I’m worried that the first Amaco Black underglaze I used on the Raven sgraffito pieces isn’t going to be intense enough. I did paint the recommended three coats, PATIENTLY waited in between coats, so we'll see.
I’m hoping I can fire up the kiln loaded with sgraffito trays in a couple of days. The good news is that right now the Alaska winter air is really, really dry –tough on my skin but GREAT for my trays!